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    'Cats Edged by No. 9/11 Penn State, 82-73

    NUSPORTSDOTCOM
    NUSPORTSDOTCOM

    NUSPORTSDOTCOM

    Feb. 20, 2014

    Final Stats

    Northwestern No. 9/11 Penn State 82, Northwestern 73
    Bryce Jordan Center • University Park, Pa.

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    UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Northwestern took on No. 9/11 Penn State Thursday night at the Bryce Jordan Center and fought until the final buzzer but the Lady Lions hung on for the 82-73 victory. The Wildcats cut a double-digit deficit to five with less than a minute remaining but couldn't overtake the Big Ten leaders down the stretch.

    Maggie Lyon led the way for NU with 17 points, including five 3-pointers which matches a career high. Lauren Douglas added 16 points and eight rebounds off the bench. Nia Coffey had 14 points in just 20 minutes of action before she fouled out early in the second and Alex Cohen also contributed 14 points and six rebounds.

    After scoring a career-high 26 points in the first meeting of the year vs. Penn State, Lyon caught fire early from 3-point range, draining two within the opening minutes. She helped the Wildcats keep things close and Alex Cohen sunk a bucket in the paint to tie things up at 12-12.

    The Lady Lions then went on an 11-0 run to gain the 23-12 lead with 11:51 left in the frame. Lyon stopped the run with her third from long distance, then back-to-back buckets by Coffey put NU within four and another score from Christen Inman put the score at 23-21 in favor of PSU.

    Lyon continued to stay hot from long distance and had her fourth 3-pointer of the game with 5:45 left in the first half to keep Northwestern within three (28-25). Penn State never relinquished the lead though and took the 38-32 advantage into the break.

    Lyon led all scorers with 14 points in the first while Coffey chipped in eight but she was whistled for her third foul late in the half. NU had the 24-21 edge on rebounds and 14-12 advantage on points in the paint. Both teams shot less than 40 percent with the Wildcats shooting 39.4 percent while PSU was limited to 34.2 percent. The Lady Lions held a sizeable advantage at the free throw line as they went 10-for-11 from the charity stripe compared to just 1-of-2 for the Wildcats.

    Both teams traded buckets in the early stages of the second with Penn State continuing to maintain a four-point lead. The Lady Lions again went on a 7-0 run, which included a four-point play by Maggie Lucas, to go ahead 47-36 with 15:59 remaining.

    The Wildcats stayed in it and cut the deficit back down to single digits with about 12 minutes remaining but had the task of finishing the game without Coffey as she picked up two quick fouls early in the half. Douglas sank two free throws with 11:43 remaining, putting the score at 50-44 in favor of Penn State.

    Penn State again went ahead by double-digits after another 3-pointer by Lucas but the Wildcats continued to fight and found themselves down just six (55-49) after five-straight points by Douglas.

    Lucas drained her fifth 3-pointer to help PSU go ahead again by double-digits and the Lady Lions capitalized on a number of three-point plays down the stretch to maintain their lead. Lyon sunk her fifth 3-pointer to match a career high, putting the score at 68-60 Penn State with 4:15 remaining.

    NU hung around and came within seven (74-67) with 1:09 remaining and picked up the pressure to force a PSU steal which led to a Christen Inman bucket to put the score at 76-71 Penn State with 52 seconds left. The NU pressure worked again, leading to another PSU turnover but the 'Cats were unable to secure a bucket on the possession. The Lady Lions converted their free throws down the stretch and hung on for the 82-73 win.

    Lucas finished with a game-high 26 points, including five 3-pointers. PSU had 29 free throw attempts, converting 25 of them, while the Wildcats were limited to just 7-of-10 from the charity stripe.

    Northwestern continues its week on the road, traveling to Columbus, Ohio, to take on the Buckeyes Sunday, Feb. 23. Tip at Ohio State is set for 11 a.m. CT and will air live on the Big Ten Network.

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